Should I still pay my HOA fees if we are not paying our mortgage and are going to do a short sale?

Asked by Ducky4485, San Ramon, CA Thu Jul 23, 2009

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Lillie Missbrenner’s answer
Lillie Missb…, Agent, San Ramon, CA
Fri Nov 18, 2011

Yes, pay your HOA dues. If you don't pay your HOA dues while doing a short sale, they can put a lien on the property for the home. This could stop the final sale of the home if no one is willing to pay the dues. If you haven't found a specialist in San Ramon as of yet, please give me a call. I can do an analysis for you on your home, together we can decide how to price your home and get it on the market right away. I had four short sales this summer in which I was the buying and selling agent for a few of them. There were two of these short sales that had HOA issues. I can give you more information on short sales, what to do regarding HOA dues and then some. I could make this a painless process if you would like. I have a great system that is working for my short sales on getting them marketed, viewed nationally and sold in as short as 45 to 60 days. If the property is priced right, I could have this home sold in a short amount of time. You might be amazed! Remember, there is NO COST to you as the seller on a short sale. Call me if you are interested in getting a hard working, aggressive realtor that knows our area working for you too. My cell is: 925-628-9100

I hope this helps and look forward to hearing from you!

Best regards,

Lillie Missbrenner, Realtor DRE: 01711589
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Danville, CA
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0 votes
Richard Hoag, Agent, Walnut Creek, CA
Thu Jul 23, 2009

The ethical thing to do is pay your HOA...why should your other fellow homeowners suffer by your lack of payment. If you can't make your mortgage payment, that is between you and your lender. I have been asked a similar question by clients who ask "Should I still make my credit card payments if my house is going to be foreclosed, and my credit is going to go into the dumps?"...and I inform them "Yes, you bought the goods and services from honest hard working people, and you enjoyed the benefits of those goods and services, and you accepted responsibility to use the credit that was offered to you pay them if you are able." I understand this is a tough situation for you...but you should try in every way possible to limit the impact of your misfortune on others." Just my humble opinion.

1 vote
Patchy, Both Buyer And Seller, Florida
Mon Dec 14, 2009
My relative just lost their renter for their condo and can no longer pay the morgage. They are not living in the condo at this time. What happens if their condo goes into foreclosure and they can't afford their HOA fees? What is their responsibility to the HOA if condo goes into foreclosure?
0 votes
Joanna Jensen, Other Pro, Livermore, CA
Wed Nov 18, 2009
Hi Ducky,

I am a Realtor as well as a Legal Assistant. I work for a Broker /Attorney. We actually had to stop the foreclosure of an HOA last week!!. So if you plan on selling your home, please pay the condo fees or try to have them taken out of escrow. You would hate to have the HOA foreclose and kill the deal.

JoAnna Jensen
Pleasanton, CA
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0 votes
My realtor told me to stop paying my mortgage and HOA fees since I was short selling, now the HOA put a lien on my house and are saying I owe them $3000. Did my realtor tell me to do the wrong thing and can they be responsible for this?
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Bob Georgiou, Agent, Danville, CA
Mon Jul 27, 2009
Just as a point of practical fact. it is nearly impossible for a HOA to foreclose on a property in California. Please consult an attorney for better information on this but my understanding is that since HOA's are determined to be mostly maintenance vehicles and they have recourse in (normal) sale for reimbursement the sellers have considerable protection from this process.
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0 votes
Keith Manson-…, , Milwaukee, WI
Sun Jul 26, 2009
There is a possiblity that if you do not pay the hoa dues that the hoa will foreclose on the property. If they foreclosue you may loose all ability to sell the property via short sale. Before you stop paying the hoa dues make sure you understand how it may effect your transaction. If you stopped making your payments get the property listed and talk to all lien holders including your HOA!

Keith Manson
First Weber Group
Certified Distressed Property Expert
0 votes
Bob Georgiou, Agent, Danville, CA
Fri Jul 24, 2009

Here is something to consider. Your bank determines what the ultimate bottom line for the short sale is. If you do not pay HOA dues, that expense is going to affect the settlement and your ability to close. The worst case might be is that you'd have to write a check at close the amount of the dues in escrow. If you have stopped paying the mortgage, I'd recommend you pay the dues....
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blaison samu…, Agent, Santa Clara, CA
Fri Jul 24, 2009
You got some good answers! my advice is also same that pay your HOA because if you are trying to do short sale and if they put a lien on your property then it would be hard to sell without paying their fees. Trust me, you can deal with the bank and they may forgive large sum of money but the HOA people is hard to deal even if there amount is just $1,000. You or someone has to pay the fees in order to close the deal.

Prudential California Realty
0 votes
Margaret Ama…, Agent, Sarasota, FL
Fri Jul 24, 2009
The short answer to this question is: Pay it!

Keep living in your house until it closes and maintain the appearance. If you are able to pay for one thing, it is the HOA fee. If you don't pay it, the rest of the residents in the community will have to pick up your share. Unpaid HOA fees can also cause closing problems.
0 votes
Dallas Texas, Agent, Dallas, TN
Thu Jul 23, 2009
Do you have your short sale approved by your lender? If not need contact mortgage company have all approved. till that time recommend pay HOA fees, insurance.

Speak with lender determine if you can reduce your payment still maintain your residence.


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0 votes
Melissa Zava…, Agent, Escondido, CA
Thu Jul 23, 2009
You already have three answers to this question, but I still wanted to share my .02 cents--after closing hundreds of short sales. Many, many lending institutions are NOT agreeing to pay the HOA fees or outstanding HOA liens on short sales these days. Countrywide (now B of A), for example, is one bank that does not usually pay these fees. Since that is the case, the only way to close the short sale transaction would be for someone to pay these fees prior to close of escrow. So . . . you should either continue to pay or be prepared to come up with the outstanding balance plus any late fees at close of escrow.

Good luck with your short sale and be patient! Most short sales are viable and can close. They just take lots and lots of patience!
0 votes
Cami Pinsak, , Camarillo, CA
Thu Jul 23, 2009
Hi Ducky,
I believe, as others do, that you should consult your attorney in this regard. And can't ethically advise you to stop payment on any obligation.
I can, however, tell you my past experience with short sales where HOA is concerned. I have had a difficult time getting lenders to pay delinquent HOA dues in order to facilitate the sale. If the seller didn't have the money to bring it current or the buyer would not contribute, it can seriously hinder the sale. might as well pay it. It might be a stretch in your pocket book, but in the long run, it could seriously facilitate the short sale of your home, do owe it.
0 votes
Fred Griffin, , Tallahassee, FL
Thu Jul 23, 2009
Hi, Ducky

Only a Real Estate Attorney can give legal advice.

Many people are going to advise you to quit paying, since it appears that you are going to sell the house via short sale, or lose it to foreclosure for non-payment. Many people will say, "Why keep throwing money into a pit?".

But again, only a Real Estate Attorney is qualified to answer your question.

Best wishes,
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